Thursday, May 30, 2024

New Tory spokesman on health probes ambulance response times

HOPES that 2013 would be the year Thurrock residents get the healthcare services they deserve suffered a setback as 2012 ended with more criticism for the ambulance service.

Troubled East of England Ambulance Service, whose Chief Executive resigned in October, have been criticised by the Health watchdog Montior for not meeting the 19-minute response time target. MPs made the same criticism of the service in November. Additionally, the Care watchdog CQC has not been able to confirm that the service, which responds to 999 calls in Thurrock, is meeting the “essential standards”.

Conservative Health spokesman Cllr Shane Hebb said “The council has a responsibility to residents to hold the Health service to account but recent headlines about Basildon hospital show that the council has not always done this, and patients have suffered.

“The council must be more proactive about the ambulance service, ensuring that this issue is top of the agenda before tragedy strikes. There has been some suggestion that the service struggles most in rural areas, which will include areas many people in Thurrock call home. The council needs to look at this and find out what is being done to ensure all residents of Thurrock get the treatment they deserve in the time required.

“The council’s Health committee was due to receive a general update from the ambulance service in March, but I have asked them to begin looking at the matter in January. We need assurances that local people are getting the service they deserve.”

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